25th
Feb
2013

Posted in Kafevend Blog

The modern convenience of plastic has made accessing clean and safe drinking water anywhere we are a reality. The health benefits attached to this water, though, are benefits that have been pursued throughout history. In the UK for instance, you have only to look at a map to spot place names with connections to this health pursuit- places like Droitwich Spa, Royal Tunbridge Wells or Bath Spa.

They point towards the popularity of 'special' water long before we came on the scene.

Archaeological finds of weapons and offerings at several European hot spring sites suggest that our reverence for water and its potential healing properties goes back to the prehistoric era. Moving on through the ages, chalybeate water, which we know contains iron deposits, has been used since medieval times as a cure for certain illnesses. During the Tudor period, a man named William Slingsby, who had visited the eponymous Spa in Belgium, decided to seek out water with similar properties back at home. He discovered a well containing iron and sulphur rich water near the twin hamlets of High and Low Harrogate and in time the larger unified town of Harrogate grew and was transformed into what is widely considered the first spa resort town in England where people could go to take medicinal waters. However, it was during the nineteenth century that spa towns became fashionable, popular among wealthy Victorians, who traveled there to both take the waters and bathe in them for their health giving properties.

With the majority of the U.K. population enjoying clean water on tap by the early twentieth century,  the desire for mineral water was effectively curbed. Nevertheless, bottled mineral water made a comeback through the 1980s with the innovative advertising of Perrier. The company created a chic, trendy product that hooked the yuppies first and then the rest of us. The bottled water market hasn't looked back since and today we have an abundance of mineral waters to choose from, with still and carbonated varieties from all over the British Isles and beyond. In fact, you can even buy water melted from icebergs!

by Kafevend

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